It was a bit unsettling to not immediately recognise the stars as they appeared after sunset. I wasn't sure if the first stars to appear were Vega, Altair or something else. Looking towards the crescent moon, which I knew was in Scorpius, I knew the red-orange star Antares must be near. Very soon the other stars appeared and for the first time I could see the entire constellation for the first time.
Antares (meaning rival of Mars) is the bright orange star in the picture. It is flanked by two fainter stars, rather like Altair, the southern star of the Summer Triangle is. In the above picture the Northumberland horizon runs roughly from upper left to lower right cleanly bisecting the Scorpion just beneath Antares. I've never had a good view of this part of the sky!
Scorpius is definitely my new favourite constellation! As darkness fell and I could see several clusters of the stars, looking like knots in the Milky Way. There was a particularly bright one near the star Shaula (the "stinger" of the Scorpion).
That's Messier 7 (Ptolemy's cluster). It's the southernmost object of Messier's list. I wish I had my telescope here! M7 has a distinct cross shape through the binoculars (it shows up well in the picture). We really miss out in terms of the Milky Way from the UK.
Dr Adrian Jannetta
Guitar strummin' explorer of the universe. Mild mannered maths teacher by day and astronomer by night.